A historic Upper Brookville home, reconstructed after a fire in 2011, is ready for new owners to add finishing touches. The property, which has a 9,000-square-foot main house with many antique features, as well as a large pool house, is on the market for $1.85 million.
After trees took down power lines during Hurricane Irene, the house was damaged by a fire that started when the lines were reconnected.
“We were going to fix the house for ourselves,” says seller Ilia McCormick, whose family has lived there for 30 years. “But we realized if we wanted to sell, not everyone has our tastes.”
The original portion of the home was built in 1690 on the other side of the street and moved to its current location in the 1750s. Additions to the home in the 1950s were constructed with reclaimed materials dating from the 18th century, giving it a Colonial style.
One of the previous owners was Bertha Benkard Rose, an American furniture collector and preservationist. Rose had created period-style rooms, modeling the house after the Winterthur Museum in Delaware, which houses an extensive collection of American decorative arts and of which she was a trustee.
All but the interior was completely redone after the fire, with a new roof and windows and the foundation shored up, McCormick says. Some rooms, which have original plaster walls and moldings, escaped damage. Original delft tiles around the fireplace in a couple of the rooms date back to 17th and 18th centuries and a portion of the original rubble foundation still remain.
“It’s like an artist’s palette really because they left it open,” says listing agent Barbara Brundage of Douglas Elliman Real Estate.
The McCormicks have been living in the home’s three-bedroom pool house during renovations. There’s also a three-car garage with an office on the property.